Thursday, April 16, 2009
The release today of the Office of Legal Counsel memos from 2002-2005, which provided "legal" justification (i.e cover) for the "alternative interrogation techniques" implemented during the Bush Adminsitration's War on Terror, will leave you speechless. Take ten minutes and read this legalistic morass from Judge Jay Bybee. It's chilling. You'll read about how waterboarding doesn't technically meet the suffering criteria of torture, but rather it is merely a "controlled acute episode". What the hell is that? Was George Orwell exhumed so he could write 2184? I'm embarassed. This was our government, our country which authorized the torture of other human beings (bad people, granted). But we tortured people and hired lawyers to re-interpret the Geneva Convention and international law and the universal unwritten statute of decent moral conduct in such a way to justify it. We tortured these people. And medical personnel/doctors were present to monitor vitals and oxygen saturations, to make sure the operatives didn't "go too far". The whole thing makes me sick.
Yesterday I ranted about high taxes and back-up quarterbacks making millions. It seems so petty and small now. Even the cecal volvulus post seems a tad frivolous. We tortured people under a Presidential directive. Things have changed. This is the world we live in now; one where our national conscience is heavy with a collective guilt. It stains us all. The only way out, from this point forward, is a policy of absolute accountability and transparency. Let the atonement begin now....